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Summary

  1. The day began with questions to the Work and Pensions team.
  2. There were two urgent questions: the first on triggering Article 50 and the second on the safety of staff in prisons.
  3. Followed by a statement on the Nato summit in Warsaw.
  4. The government survived several attempts to alter the Wales Bill at committee stage.
  5. Peers began work at 2.30pm and then moved onto the Investigatory Powers Bill at committee stage.

Live Reporting

By Esther Webber and Sam Francis

All times stated are UK

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  1. End of business in the Commons

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    That's it for the Commons for today - MPs return tomorrow at 11.30am for Foreign and Commonwealth Office questions. 

  2. 'Bulk interference' powers

    Investigatory Powers Bill

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Peers are debating a series of amendments designed to restrict the circumstance that "bulk interference" can be deployed.

    At the moment orders allowing multiple computers to be accessed - including hacking - to acquire information on the grounds of: national security; preventing or detecting serious crime; and threats to “the economic well-being of the UK”.

    An amendment tabled by Liberal Democrat peer Lord Paddick would only allow "bulk interference" on economic grounds "if there is reasonable suspicion that a criminal offence has been or is likely to be committed".

  3. Great Western Railway's bicycle policy

    Adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Ben Bradshaw

    Labour MP Ben Bradshaw is opening today's adjournment debate, on Great Western Railway's bicycle policy.

    He says cyclists face the "Orwellian" situation of not being able to take their bikes on board, even if there is space, if they have not reserved a space for their vehicle. 

  4. MPs voting on income tax amendment

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs vote 273 to 46 to reject a new clause tabled by Plaid Cymru would allow the National Assembly for Wales to determine the income thresholds at which income tax is payable by Welsh taxpayers.  

  5. Text of statements

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The full text of today's statements are now available on Hansard - the official record of proceedings in Parliament.

    The response to Helen Goodman's urgent question on parliamentary approval of Article 50, is available here.

    Labour MP Andrew Slaughter's urgent question on the safety of staff in prisons is available here.

    Defence Secretary Michael Fallon's statement on Nato's Warsaw summit is available here.

  6. MPs reject removal of Wales secretary veto on water supply

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs vote 274 to 47 to reject a Plaid amendment, which would have removed the power of the secretary of state to veto any Welsh legislation or measures that might have a serious adverse impact on water supply or quality in England.  

  7. MPs reject greater energy powers for Wales

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs vote 275 to 195 to reject Plaid's amendment 74, which would have removed the 350 megawatts limit on the Welsh government’s legislative competence in the field of energy.

  8. Minister warns against 'reopening' Wales energy issues

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Guto Bebb

    Wales Minister Guto Bebb cautions that Plaid Cymru is trying to "reopen political consensus" agreed through the Silk Commission, whereas "this bill is attempting to move forward".

    He reminds MPs that the electricity system is fully integrated and it would be impractical to try to separate them. 

  9. Probing amendments

    Investigatory Powers Bill

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Peers once again move back to scrutinising the Investigatory Powers Bill.

    Labour's Lord Rosser has tabled a series of probing amendments - designed to clarify the government's position on a subject on the record.

    The amendment would require communications firms served with warrants or notices to "publish figures on the number of warrants or notices received in the previous 180 days", but aims to get the government to set out the level of transparency on warrants.

  10. Appropriate level of legal protection

    Caste-based discrimination debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Williams of Trafford

    Communities Minister Baroness Williams of Trafford argues that the legal precedent set in the Tirkey v Chandhok case may "already provide the appropriate level of legal protection against caste discrimination".

    There is no "unanimous collective agreement of what caste is" therefore it is unclear what impact adding "caste-based discrimination" into the Equalities Act would have.

    She adds, "I think we all want the same thing: the appropriate level of legal protection" against caste-based discrimination and the question is "how best to achieve that for everyone".

  11. Plaid Cymru calls for devolution of air passenger duty

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Jonathan Edwards

    Plaid Cymru's Jonathan Edwards put forwards his party's argument for air passenger duty to be devolved to Wales, saying it would generate "substantial revenue". 

    He points to the devolution of APD to Northern Ireland and Scotland, whereas Wales, in his view "has once again been given the short end of the stick". 

  12. Labour apologises for 'inaction'

    Caste-based discrimination debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Former shadow equalities spokeswoman Baroness Thornton

    Former shadow equalities spokeswoman Baroness Thornton makes a one-off return to the despatch box to apologise on behalf of the Labour party to those suffering discrimination.

    She calls on the government to apologise to those who "have lived with inaction on this for so long".

    She says that "as a woman, I have heard all the arguments against legislating on discrimination being used in this house before".

  13. Bringing up caste 'undermines community cohesion'

    Caste-based discrimination debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Conservative peer Lord Popat

    Conservative peer Lord Popat opposes amending the Equalities Act 2010 "on behalf of the vast majority of Hindus".

    He argues that amending the bill to include caste-based discrimination will be "bringing to the surface social forces that are almost entirely irrelevant to this country" and "undermining community cohesion".

    Indian Hindus have integrated into the UK society to the extent where caste is no longer an issue, and giving caste such a "prominent position" in legislation would be a backward step, he says.

  14. 'Intolerable' lack of action

    Caste based discrimination debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Harries of Pentrgarth

    Caste-based discrimination is of "deep seriousness to the hundreds of those treated badly" because of their birth status, Lord Harries of Pentrgarth argues, who "see their fellow citizens protected on discrimination grounds in a way they are not".

    He criticises the government's inaction on the issue, arguing the UK is in "clear breach on international obligation on this issue".

    Lord Harries calls on the government to "do its constitutional duty" and outlaw caste-based discrimination.

    "Those who are discriminated against find it totally intolerable that the clear will of both Houses is being frustrated in this way," Lord Harries adds, referring to the passing of the Equalities Act 2010 by the Commons and the Lords.

  15. MP raises wind farm concerns

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Chris Davies

    Conservative MP Chris Davies raises concerns about devolving wind energy policy to Wales, saying his constituents fear mid-Wales could be "littered, covered and blanketed" with wind turbines. 

    He wants the Wales secretary to have a veto over UK-wide wind energy schemes. 

  16. Wales could be 'energy powerhouse for UK'

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Paul Flynn

    Shadow Wales secretary Paul Flynn says Welsh topography gives it the potential to become "an energy powerhouse for the whole of the UK" and this has been "neglected" in favour of "polluting forms of energy". 

    He's arguing for Welsh ministers to be given oversight of renewable energy incentive schemes. 

    As the bill is currently drafted, the government is not required to get Welsh ministers' approval.

  17. Caste based discrimination case

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Statue of Justice

    Last year a woman was awarded £184,000 in what has been described as the "first caste based discrimination" case.

    Permila Tirkey, 39, who was recruited from India to be a domestic servant for a family in the UK and paid 11p an hour, has been awarded damages for unpaid wages.

    Ms Tirkey was discriminated against because of her "low caste", her lawyers said, describing it as the first successful case of its kind.

    She worked 18-hour days, having been recruited because her employers wanted someone "servile", a tribunal hear.

    Read more here.

  18. Caste discrimination in the UK

    Caste-based discrimination debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Peers now move to a short dinner break debate combating caste-based discrimination in the United Kingdom, led by the crossbencher Lord Harries of Pentregarth, who once upon a time sat as bishop in the House of Lords.

    The concept of “caste” is complex, but generally refers to hereditary communities differentiated according to different functions of life, such as occupation. It is associated with South Asia, particularly India and its diaspora.

    Caste discrimination is not expressly prohibited under UK equality legislation, although section 9 of the Equality Act 2010 requires the government to introduce secondary legislation to make caste an aspect of race, thereby making caste discrimination a form of race discrimination - though this has yet to happen.

  19. MPs vote against devolving licencing powers to Welsh Assembly

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs have rejected Labour's amendment to give powers over the sale and supply of alcohol and club licencing to the Welsh Assembly by 270 votes to 210.

  20. MPs vote against devolving policing to Wales

    Wales Bill

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs haven rejected the Plaid Cymru amendment to give powers over crime, public order and policing to the Welsh Assembly by 270 votes to 47.